Bigger, Stronger, Faster*

Overview

In the hopes of exploring American culture's increased obsession with winning, documentary filmmaker Christopher Bell examines the anabolic steroid use of his two brothers. After setting the stage with a look at the cultural backdrop of the 1980s -- in which hulky stars like Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger were the ideal -- Bell illustrates how he and his brothers became involved in the bodybuilding subculture, eventually discovering the brutal truth that success in the lifestyle of pumping iron ...
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Overview

In the hopes of exploring American culture's increased obsession with winning, documentary filmmaker Christopher Bell examines the anabolic steroid use of his two brothers. After setting the stage with a look at the cultural backdrop of the 1980s -- in which hulky stars like Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger were the ideal -- Bell illustrates how he and his brothers became involved in the bodybuilding subculture, eventually discovering the brutal truth that success in the lifestyle of pumping iron demanded the use of steroids. ~ Cammila Collar
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Deleted scenes - 40 minutes off footage not scene in theaters; Behind the scenes
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
If Michael Moore had made a movie about steroids -- and he might have, given enough time -- it would have looked a lot like Bigger, Stronger, Faster*. Documentarian Christopher Bell emulates Moore's wry narration his voice even sounds similar, Moore's examination of his own family history, Moore's reliance on funny graphics and archival footage, and even Moore's quixotic quest for an impossible-to-interview white whale -- in this case, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, former bodybuilder and admitted steroid user. Where Bell's approach differs is by not blatantly coming from one side of the political spectrum, which broadens the potential appeal of his message. Clearly, Bell leans Democratic, by virtue of his very interest in documentary filmmaking. But if you think Bigger, Stronger, Faster* exists only to showcase the negative impact of steroids on society, think again. In fact, Bell dedicates one whole passage to dispelling the notion that steroids have been scientifically proven to cause cancer and excess rage. More than anything, Bell uses steroids and other strength/beauty/performance enhancers as a window into America's cultural obsession with being the best, even suggesting that steroids get a bad rap relative to such drugs as beta blockers, which can give musicians a competitive advantage by increasing their focus. Of course, Bell would never have made a movie about steroids if they didn't hit close to home, as his brothers -- Mike "Mad Dog" Bell, a professional wrestler, and Mark "Smelly" Bell, a competitive weight lifter -- are dedicated users whose obsession with icons like Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, and Hulk Hogan has negatively impacted the very trajectory of their lives. Bell's film is slick, fluid, informative, and often quite funny, but it has a tragic footnote: Mike Bell, an abuser of multiple substances, was found dead in a rehab facility just six months after his brother's film hit theaters.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/30/2008
  • UPC: 876964001403
  • Original Release: 2008
  • Rating:

  • Source: Magnolia
  • Aspect Ratio: Alternate Wide Screen (1.78:1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:46:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 28,887

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Mark "Smelly" Bell Participant
Mike "Mad Dog" Bell Participant
Rosemary Bell Participant
Sheldon Bell Participant
Christian Boeving Participant
Barry Bonds Participant
Wade Exum Participant
Donald Hooton Participant
Ben Johnson Participant
Floyd Landis Participant
Carl Lewis Participant
John Romano Participant
Jeff Taylor Participant
Gregg Valentino Participant
Gary Wadler Participant
Technical Credits
Christopher Bell Director, Screenwriter
Terrance J. Aarnio Executive Producer
Stephanie Brown Sound/Sound Designer
Alexander Buono Cinematographer, Producer, Screenwriter
Jim Czarnecki Producer
Andy Dellenbach Executive Producer
Derek Drouin Editor
Kurt Engfehr Co-producer
Julie Janata Editor
Julianne Jordan Musical Direction/Supervision
Christopher Klonecke Animator
Shannon Leigh Olds Editor
Gail Paget-Wilkes Associate Producer
Dave Porter Score Composer
Tamsin Rawady Producer, Screenwriter
Darrin Roberts Editor
John Rodd Score Composer, Sound Mixer
Rick Schaff Cinematographer
Richard Schiffrin Executive Producer
Brian Singbiel Editor
Dave Weind Executive Producer
Robert Weiser Executive Producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Bigger, Stronger, Faster*
1. Growing Up [6:03]
2. The Old Days [3:01]
3. Dirty Little Secrets [5:13]
4. So What You Got To Do [4:31]
5. American Dreams [4:27]
6. The Secret Weapon [4:56]
7. No Safe Drugs [4:50]
8. Steroids 101 [4:02]
9. Taking Control [6:00]
10. Strong Role Models [2:39]
11. Westside Barbell [4:40]
12. Everyone's On Something [4:56]
13. Test Results [1:54]
14. Taking a Stand [4:54]
15. Fighting For a Cause [5:43]
16. Not Fooling Anyone [6:55]
17. Changing Perceptions [5:35]
18. Secret Formulas [4:41]
19. Unanswered Questions [4:11]
20. A Nation On Steroids [6:43]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Bigger, Stronger, Faster*
   Play Movie
   Scene Selections
   Set Up
      Audio: English 5.1 Dolby Digital
      Audio: English 2.0 Dolby Digital
      Subtitles: Spanish
      Subtitles: Off
   Special Features
      Behind the Scenes
      Deleted Scenes
         Play All
         Steroids For HIV
         More Porn Stars
         Bodybuilders / Gym Rats
         Side Effects
         David Callahan
         Olympic Drug Testing
         Floyd Landis, Hometown Hero
         More Pilots
         More Musicians
         Eating the Belgian Blue
         Bell Brothers' Heart Scans
         Chris & Smelly
         Roid Rage
         Mad Dog's Wrestling Match
         More Valentino
         Anti-Aging
      Also From Magnolia Home Entertainment
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